Is that Kareem Abdul-Jabbar? Moses Malone maybe? Nope. It's Steve Nash.
Chances are, you've probably read or heard
about how Steve Nash -- "disguised" in a Chinese opera bandana and a pair of funky goggles -- played some pickup basketball (followed by a little pickup soccer) in Beijing over the weekend. Apparently, Nash is in China for the week doing promotional and (of course) charity work. And, naturally, awesomeness ensued.
Said a decidedly un-ninja-like Nash: "As soon as I walked on they recognized me. [The disguise] didn't really work." Of course
they recognized you, Steve. How could they not? After all, you're the only living human being who can swim faster than sharks
. Oh, and they might know you for that whole "two-time NBA MVP" thingie too.
I'm not really into hero worship (and don't bring up Larry Bird, because that's more "way of life" than "religion"). But if there was one NBA player I'd want to hang out with -- past or present -- it would be Steve Nash. He's just so cool. Maybe not in an Arthur Fonzarelli
kind of way, but Nash seems genuinely fun, clever and self-effacing. Maybe I'm wrong. I mean, I don't know Nash, or any other NBA players for that matter. For all I know, he secretly spends time stealing social security checks and working on a Death Ray that will finally destroy Superman once and for all. But I don't think so.
Seriously, doesn't Nash seem more well-adjusted than most NBA players...particularly the elite ones? There's a noted absense of rampant ego-mania, apathy, self-centeredness and needless alpha male posturing. He's dedicated to winning, but not in the obsessive, borderline (and sometimes over-the-border) toxic way most superstars are. Sure, Nash has expressed disappointment and pointed the random finger on occasion, but he doesn't abuse his teammates or blame them for his shortcomings (or lack of a championship). I can't remember him demanding a trade or humiliating his teammates in the press. He certainly expressed some skepticism (and maybe a little discontent) with the Suns' change in philosophy last season, but I don't believe he got Terry Porter fired. And if he didn't give Porter his full support, that is (as far as I know) his worst sin as a professional basketball player. (Well, that and the hair.)
The fact is, I just really like Steve Nash. And not just because he likes to get liquored up with Dirk Nowiztki
. He's one of the good guys. The NBA could use a lot more guys like him. It's unfortunate that his name has become synonymous with the problems surrounding MVP voting. It's even more unfortunate that the :07 Seconds or Less Suns were dismantled (or crumbled from within) before he could make it to the Finals. On the bright side, Nash doesn't appear to measure his life by awards, championships or public opinion. And he's a better person for it.
Labels: Steve Nash